After President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw the United States from the Paris Climate Agreement on 1 June, Business and Energy Secretary Greg Clark has reassured that the UK remains committed to the accord.
Clark drew on how the UK had played “a major role” in securing the agreement and said that clean growth was “a key pillar of our modern industrial strategy”. Earlier in the day, Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson had told Sky News the UK would continue to “lobby the Americans and the White House to show the leadership they have shown in the past on reducing carbon dioxide”. Johnson also stated the UK still believed international action was required to lower emissions and slow global warming.
The Paris Agreement aims to keep the increase in global average temperature to “well below” 2 °C above pre-industrial levels and to pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 °C above pre-industrial levels. By withdrawing from the deal, the United States joins Nicaragua, which did not feel the deal went far enough, and Syria as the only countries not signed up to the agreement.
Trump has been widely criticised for his decision, including from businesses such as Apple, ExxonMobil, Chevron, Shell, Unilever and Goldman Sachs all speaking out against the withdrawal.